My poetic muse has been resting recently, hence the reduction in the rate of new material.However sparks can fly from different places, and an invitation to join the “Write Down Speak Up” collective resulted in three poems.The first was prompted by the hordes of Charity propositioners, “Chuggers”, to be found around New St Station,Birmingham, the second “Lost in Lace”, came from a promotional poster, displayed on the train, for a book. “The Slope of Hope” refers to the remarkable swooping canopy around the new QE Hospital building in Selly Oak.

The last piece, “After Dark” arose after a poignant farewell coffee with the beautiful, inspiring, Fatima Al-Matar prior to her return to Kuwait, during which we discussed the pyschology of women drawn to abusive relationships.Chuggers

They stake their place in the thoroughfare
Allowing just enough space for folk to pass
Begging permission :“If I could just ask?”

Memorised lines splatter in random rhythm
Multiple hooks hopefully cast
Their plaintiff plea:” If I could just ask?”

Seeking a tentative tantalising bite
A cause reheated behind the mask
Excuse me sir: “If I could just ask?”

They lurch, puppets in programmed dance
Rehearsed bonhomie blazing fast
Miming the words: “If I could just ask?”

Trying to break your thousand yard stare
Of insouciant indifference to their task
Their prey silently imploring “Please don’t ask”

Lost in Lace

In the fine embroidery
That beautify
Disguise and seduce
Swirling pretty patterns restricted
Within angular lines
Which cannot be contained
Perfectly framed

The Slope of Hope

The Slope of Hope

Raise your eyes
Dare to soar
Then teeter
Slip slide glide
Down perfect lines
Don’t stop
To ask “Y”
Into the unknown
Over the edge
Throw your soul
Off the precipice
Your body
Will follow

After Dark

It fades. The discolouration.
Grazed skin heals, cream and powder help

The blows tend to fall in different places
In patchwork pattern.

But sometimes, when bruised skin
Is struck again, the clenched fist is exquisite

Repetition comforts in nihilistic sedation
A supine acquiescence to specious predation

Anaesthetising the ache of savage fate
Dull thud

Of impossible horizons and crushed hopes
Swept by an ebb tide.

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